The real vocation of some people entrusted with delivering primary and secondary education is to validate this proposition: The three R's -- formerly reading, 'riting and 'rithmetic -- now are racism, reproduction and recycling. Especially racism.
During Wednesday's Table Talk program at the Columbus-Lowndes Public Library, four well-known local officials led a discussion on the subject, "My Favorite Childhood Book is...." Lowndes County supervisors Harry Sanders and Leroy Brooks, along with Columbus Mayor Robert Smith and Chancery Clerk Lisa Younger Neese, spoke briefly about their favorite books, but it was the discussion that followed that proved most interesting.
We all know that guns can cost lives because the media repeat this message endlessly, as if we could not figure it out for ourselves. But even someone who reads newspapers regularly and watches numerous television newscasts may never learn that guns also save lives -- much less see any hard facts comparing how many lives are lost and how many are saved.
Monday night, the Friends of the Columbus-Lowndes Public Library announced their decision to name their endowment fund to enhance the library's childhood reading program for Edwina Williams, who is far better known as Mother Goose. This had to be the easiest choice in the whole history of choosing.
It isn't often that one gets to hear both the strains of "Dixie" and an African drum concert in the same public square.
Jonylah Watkins died on a Tuesday. She was with her father, who was sitting in a minivan in Chicago on the night of March 11 when someone opened fire.
Walk out into the backyard at 4 a.m. and the first thing you notice is the birds. A million of them there must be, all singing their particular songs. The result is a symphonic composition more complex and beautiful than anything a human could conceive.
When asked to explain the brisk pace of his novels, Elmore Leonard said, "I leave out the parts that people skip." You will not want to skip anything in William Zinsser's short essays written for the American Scholar magazine's Web site and now collected in "The Writer Who Stayed," a book that begins with him wondering why "every year student writing is a little more disheveled."
Tonight, the Columbus City Council will consider a proposal to amend its hiring policies as they apply to people with felony convictions. This comes in the wake of enforcement guidelines issued recently by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that warned employers that making employment decisions based solely on a candidate's criminal history could be considered discrimination.
Spring flings a craving on me for something new to wear; something "springy" even if temperatures are freezing. No matter, I wanted something the yellow of a daffodil, the fuchsia of loropetalum or the purple of a budding redbud. Only I was prevented from going to my usual thrift haunts because I had given up my love of thrifting for Lent. It meant sacrifice.
Many hoped Paul Harvey would never die. Listening to the commentator's daily radio broadcast from Chicago was a happy habit for legions of Mississippians from right after World War II until 2009 when, at age 90, Harvey's life and career came to its inevitable end.
In a previous column, I referred to the Mississippi Legislature as a "festering pile of stupid." Upon reflection, this was not an accurate portrayal. As the 2013 legislative session draws toward a merciful end, I am reminded daily that there is a more complete description of our state leaders: "A devious, festering pile of stupid."
The fight goes on. Whether cats are bird-killing machines or soft balls of love (for themselves, anyway) remains a subject of painful debate. The first part is undoubtedly true. Cats in the United States destroy a median of 2.4 billion birds a year. Add to that death toll 2.3 billion mammals, many of them native creatures: chipmunks, rabbits and voles, reptiles and amphibians.
Google has started a big "Go Paperless in 2013" campaign. Paper, they say, is bad for the environment. It's high time someone called bovine manure on this. Trees are organic. Trees are renewable. Tree farms reduce CO2. There are more forests in Mississippi than there were at the turn of the century.
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